Whitney Reed has taught dance since 2006, and has been dancing since she was three years old. She danced competitively for twelve years and has gone through training with Paula Adbul where she was recognized for her outstanding tap skills, Ray Leeper, and Mia Michaels. Whitney's dancers and choreography have been recognized for numerous top 10 placements, "Outstanding Technique", "Showmanship", "Directors Choice Awards", "Outstanding Choreography", "Overall Performance", "A Cut Above", many "Judges Choice Awards", and award winning costumes at regional and national competitions. Several of Whitney's dancers are also regional and national title holders. Reed Performing Arts Company received the "National Studio of the Year" award in 2016 at Rainbow Nationals in Panama City Beach, Florida. Most recently RPAC was recognized as the 2018 "ADCC Studio of Excellence" at StarQuest National Talent Competition in Galveston, Texas. Whitney received a Bachelors Degree in Communication from the University of Missouri - Columbia, a Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education from Park University, and also holds a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership from Northwest Missouri State University. After completing her Elementary Education degree, Whitney taught fourth grade for five years. She continues to share her love for teaching with her dancers. When she is not teaching dance she is spending time with her daughters Anniston and Berkely, and husband Jeff.
Jeff received his Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education and a Minor in Music from Missouri Southern State University and also holds a Master's Degree in Educational Leadership from Pittsburg State University. Jeff enjoys teaching theatre to kids and helping them be their absolute best on and off the stage! He has been in multiple commercials, print Ads and industrial video for several companies. Jeff is no stranger to the stage. He has performed in multiple plays including: Death of a Salesman, The Mouse Trap, The Magicians Nephew, Carousel, You're A Good Man Charlie Brown, and Snoopy. He was last seen as "Professor Harold Hill" in The Music Man. Jeff also performed in the world premier of Starlight Theatre's production of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde. He has also directed over 30 children's musicals including Aladdin Jr., Bah Humbug! Scrooge's Christmas Carol, Willy Wonka Jr., Annie Jr., The Wizard of Oz - Young Performers' Edition, Beauty and The Beast Jr., The Little Mermaid Jr., Seussical Jr., Peter Pan Jr., Mulan Jr., The Music Man Jr., Shrek The Musical Jr., Elf The Musical Jr., Madagascar A Musical Adventure Jr., Newsies Jr., and The Lion King Jr.
Amelia Ellsworth was born in Portland, Oregon. She began her formal ballet training at the age of eleven under the direction of Ulla Ames, in which she participated in programs with Madison Ballet, Boston Ballet, and the Royal Academy of Dance. Upon graduation of her pre-professional program in 2010, she was accepted into the ranks of Ballet Midwest, where she performed for numerous seasons under the artistic direction of Barbara Ebert and continued her studies with artists such as Paula Weber and Sean Duus. Amelia's favorite roles include the Pas de Trois from Swan Lake, Balanchine's Who Care's?, Willis from Jules Perrot's Giselle, and the title roles of Sugar Plum Fairy and Cinderella. Since moving back to Kansas City, she has collaborated with artists from Kansas City Ballet, Ballet Magnificat, and the New York City Ballet, and has been blessed to work with and teach children from all around the metropolitan area as she furthers her education in dance. Amelia is eternally grateful to her family and mentors for all her successes and is excited to be on faculty with Reed Performing Arts Company.
Tori began her dance training in Champaign, IL where she danced competitively with Art in Motion Dance Studio for 10 years. She has always had a love and appreciation for ballet and has been teaching Ballet for seven years. Tori continued her training at The Conservatory of Dance - University of Missouri-Kansas City, where she received her BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography with an emphasis in Ballet. At UMKC, she performed in many contemporary and classical ballet works, one of her favorites being George Balanchine’s Concerto Barocco (New York City Ballet). She also performed professionally with Wylliams Henry Contemporary Dance and Tristian Griffin Dance Company during her time as a student. Upon graduation, Tori spent time dancing professionally in Chicago, IL before returning to Kansas City. She is currently performing with Quixotic Fusion and teaching dance and Pilates. This is her first year teaching at RPAC and she is excited for what’s to come!
Ashlee has been teaching competitive dance for over 13 years. She started dancing at the age of two and danced competitively until she graduated from high school. She also had the honor to perform as a dancer in The Nutcracker with the Oklahoma City Ballet, The Cathouse Cabaret Burlesque show, as well as performing at Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, and dancing on the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line. Ashlee also has had the opportunity to take class in New York City at Broadway Dance Center from some amazing instructors. As a choreographer, Ashlee's dancers and choreography have been recognized for numerous top 10 placements at the regional and national level. She has also choreographed for several dance teams, cheer teams, and dance clinics. Ashlee received her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education at Graceland University and loves teaching dance at Reed Performing Arts Company in Lees Summit, Mo. She loves teaching and has found a passion in teaching children and will continue to share her passion in dance and in the classroom as well!
Makayla was born and raised in Lees Summit and has been dancing since the age of three. Makayla was on the northern stars dance team in high school. She also took ballet at KC Ballet and was in The Nutcracker for 3 years. She was a gymnast for 10 years and her passion for tumbling has grown since she started teaching. She started teaching dance and Acro in 2013. She trained to become acrobatic arts certified in 2018. Her passion in dancing is watching her students grow into amazing dancers and such true inspirations. Makayla has her Associates Degree in Nursing from Penn Valley and in her free time you will find her spending time with her daughter Oaklei. This is Makayla's 4th year at RPAC and she cannot wait for another amazing year!
At a young age, Kas like many other little girls, loved dancing around the house. Her parents decided to put her in a little jazz and tap class for fun at the age of 3. Little did they know that would set off a spark in Kas’ eyes. Since the first class she ever took, to now, she can’t get enough of dancing. Even though her dancing started as a fun thing to do it quickly turned into her passion and then her career. You can catch Kas all around KC in live shows, performances, conventions (where she assists), or you can see some of her pieces she has choreographed at competitions. You may have also seen her in LA, NYC, STL and many more. At the age of fourteen Kas started choreographing at local studios. Besides her being in shows or choreographing, Kas believes it’s important to train consistently. No matter what age or how great of a dancer you are there’s always room to grow. Kas is currently training in drop in classes at studios, conventions, workshops, and currently training in IDL Tigerstylecrew! A few things Kas has said since she was little are “fake it till you make it” and “never give up!”
Miss Tate is from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Growing up she danced, trained, and competed with Theatre Arts Inc. and Prestige Dance Company. At Prestige she worked with artists and choreographers Kate Jablonski and Joey Tarwater. While in high school she attended the Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute for three consecutive summers, studying the discipline of modern dance. At OSAI, she had the opportunity to work with modern dance artists Helen Simoneau and Daniel Squire. After graduating high school in 2013 Tate attended the University of Central Oklahoma pursuing her Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Dance Performance and graduated in 2017. During her time at UCO, she danced with the Kaleidoscope Dance Company and had several amazing opportunities and adventures with them. In 2016 she was casted as “Maria” in UCO’s version of West Side Story and was named Student Director of the company. Also while at UCO in 2016, she got to perform at the American College Dance Association. In 2017 her piece and senior capstone work “1346” was honored to perform at the American College Dance Association, and later in that year “1346” performed at the Gibney Dance Theatre in New York City. Throughout her time at UCO and with the Kaleidoscope Dance Company she had the chance to work with many amazing artists such as; Noa Shiloh, Bill Evans, Clarence Brooks, Hannah Baumgarten, Lachlan McCarthy, Greg Russell, Will Johnston, Julie Bata, Brandon Fink, and of course her talented professors of dance. She studied at the University of Central Missouri and received her Master’s in the Art of Teaching and Alternative Certification. This is her sixth year with Reed Performing Arts Company and she cannot wait for more to come!
Elizabeth Willard began dancing at the age of 3 and quickly fell in love. Growing up she studied several styles of dance, including jazz, tap, ballet, pointe, lyrical, contemporary, and musical theater, under the instruction of several talented and distinguished teachers. She was also privileged to attend a plethora of conventions and competitions throughout her years of training that helped her expand her knowledge of dance. Elizabeth was involved in competitive studio dance, high school dance team, competitive show choir, and later went on to take dance classes at the collegiate level. She began teaching and choreographing in 2010. Some of the various positions she has held are dance instructor, dance choreographer, high school dance coach, dance and music director at a fine arts preschool, and private vocal and piano instructor, Over the years, she has also choreographed for high school dance teams, competitive dance studios, competitive show choirs, school musicals and theater productions, and color guard teams. Elizabeth's work has received awards for choreography and technique, as well as many overall placements and special judges' awards. Elizabeth has a Master's degree in Child Development and Family Sciences from the University of Central Missouri. She previously worked with a youth program at a community mental health location before transitioning to teaching 2nd grade. She loves using what she learned in college, as well as the classroom to make herself a better dance teacher. She currently spends her days with her daughter before heading to the dance studio in the evenings. Elizabeth is thrilled to be joining the team at RPAC, and looks forward to sharing her love of dance with the students. She is also eager to form relationships with the teachers, dancers, and their families this year.